Last month, when Apple had removed Fortnite from App Store, there were rumors that Epic Games is going to form a coalition against the Cupertino-based tech giant to fight its app commission and App Store policies. Well, the rumors were true. Epic Games along with Spotify, Tile, and ten other companies has formed a new organization called the “Coalition for App Fairness” with an effort to fight against the app commission that Apple charges to developers and a few policies of App Store.
The Coalition of App Fairness is based out of Washington DC and Brussels, and calls itself as “an independent non-profit organization founded by industry-leading companies to advocate for freedom of choice and fair competition across the app ecosystem.” The ten other companies in the organization are Basecamp, BLIX, Blockchain, Deezer, EPC, Matchgroup, News Media Europe, Prepear, ProtonMail, and SkyDemon, all of which have had some kind of clash with Apple regarding app commission and App Store policies.
According to the organization, “EVERY DAY, APPLE TAXES CONSUMERS & CRUSHES INNOVATION.” The Coalition for App Fairness claims to lead legal and regulatory changes against three key issues “anti-competitive policies,” “30 percent app tax,” and “no consumer freedom.” The organization has listed ten changes that they would like app distribution platforms to follow. Here they are.
- No developer should be required to use an app store exclusively, or to use ancillary services of the app store owner, including payment systems, or to accept other supplementary obligations in order to have access to the app store.
- No developer should be blocked from the platform or discriminated against based on a developer’s business model, how it delivers content and services, or whether it competes in any way with the app store owner.
- Every developer should have timely access to the same interoperability interfaces and technical information as the app store owner makes available to its own developers.
- Every developer should always have access to app stores as long as its app meets fair, objective and non-discriminatory standards for security, privacy, quality, content, and digital safety.
- A developer’s data should not be used to compete with the developer.
- Every developer should always have the right to communicate directly with its users through its app for legitimate business purposes.
- No app store owner or its platform should engage in self-preferencing its own apps or services, or interfere with users’ choice of preferences or defaults.
- No developer should be required to pay unfair, unreasonable or discriminatory fees or revenue shares, nor be required to sell within its app anything it doesn’t wish to sell, as a condition to gain access to the app store.
- No app store owner should prohibit third parties from offering competing app stores on the app store owner’s platform, or discourage developers or consumers from using them.
- All app stores will be transparent about their rules and policies and opportunities for promotion and marketing, apply these consistently and objectively, provide notice of changes, and make available a quick, simple and fair process to resolve disputes.
The Coalition of App Fairness is trying to lure other developers to join the fight against Apple’s app commission and App Store policies saying that “together we will fight back against the monopolist control of the app ecosystem by Apple.”[Source: Coalition for App Fairness]